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Chambers directory picks 14 young partners & associates as up-and-comers; Amarchand, AZB, JSA win most overall citatations

'Up and comers' and 'stars', according to Chambers
'Up and comers' and 'stars', according to Chambers

14 Indian law firm partners and senior associates will be named as “up and comers” and “associates to watch” in legal directory Chambers and Partners’ yet-to-be released Asia Pacific 2014 guide.

According to data shared with Legally India by Chambers’, its latest guide features 375 lawyers across 88 domestic Indian law firms that have been ranked a total of 491 times in different practice areas, with Amarchand Mangaldas and AZB & Partners picking up the greatest number of citations.

Upcoming and to be watched out

The “up and comers”, according to Chambers, are partners who “do not yet have an established reputation but who are driving their firm's growth”, while the “associates to watch” are senior associates “recognised for their work in the background of major deals”. [Clarification: The below list does not include previous years’ “up-and-comers” – a list of them is published in the comments below]

‘Up and comers’

  • S&R Associates capital markets partner Bhakta Patnaik,
  • Khaitan & Co competition partner Avaantika Kakkar,
  • Sarin & Co managing partner Nitin Sarin,
  • Rajani Singhania & Partners corporate partner Reena Grover,
  • Platinum Partners M&A partner Gaurav Desai,
  • Crestlaw Partners disputes partner Arun Kumar,
  • Luthra & Luthra employment partner Suyash Srivastava,
  • IC Legal private equity partner Tejesh Chitlangi,
  • Nishith Desai Associates TMT partner Gowree Gokhale, and
  • ALMT Legal private equity partner Dhanya Menon.

‘Associates to watch’

  • Talwar Thakore & Associates capital markets associate Rahul Gulati,
  • Samvad Partners M&A associate Ashwini Vittalachar,
  • Trilegal employment associate Atul Gupta, and
  • Udwadia Udeshi & Argus Partners private equity associate Adity Chaudhury.
Firm Name Individual rankings
Amarchand & Mangaldas 29
AZB & Partners 28
J Sagar Associates 25
Khaitan & Co 21
Luthra & Luthra 17
Trilegal 14
Economic Laws Practice 11
Samvad Partners 11
Kochhar & Co 8
Wadia Ghandy & Co 8
ALMT Legal 8
Dua Associates 8
S&R Associates 8

Ranked performers and stars

“Up and comers” and “associates to watch” are not included in the final ranking for firms, where lawyers at the 10 largest Indian law firms accounted for 163 professionals across all ‘bands’ in the 2014 guide.

Correction: The data initially received from Chambers erroneously stated that the rankings counted the number of lawyers ranked at each firm. In fact, the number in the rankings reflects how many rankings the firm has in different practice areas, with individual lawyers potentially being able to be ranked in more than one area. The error is regretted.

Amarchand Mangaldas lodged the most number of lawyer ranks – 29 - including Mumbai managing partner Cyril Shroff and Delhi managing partner Shardul Shroff who were two among seven Indian “star practitioners” last year.

AZB & Partners follows on Amarchand’s heels with 28 individual ranks for lawyers including “star practitioners” and co-founders Zia Mody and Ajay Bahl. Mody is the only woman star practitioner from India.

J Sagar Associates (JSA) has 25 ranks by its lawyers, followed by Khaitan & Co with 21, Luthra with 17 and Trilegal with 14.

Economic Laws Practice (ELP) is tied with Samv?d Partners – formerly known as Narasappa Doraswamy Raja – each with 11 individual ranks by its lawyers. Kochhar & Co, Wadia Ghandy & Co, ALMT Legal, Dua Associates and S&R Associates each have eight rankings by its lawyers.

Bharucha & Partners managing partner MP Bharucha, Saikrishna & Associates managing partner Saikrishna Rajagopal, and senior advocates Fali Nariman and Harish Salve are the other stars. Salve is the only individual with two star rankings in India – his previously earned star in the disputes space and now in tax.

The star – Chambers’ highest possible ranking – is given to individuals with “exceptional recommendations in their field”, according to its internal criteria.


According to information supplied by the directory, Chambers’ lawyer rankings are not paid for but require law firms to submit details of the work done with client references, which are vetted by London-based researchers with clients and other lawyers. Lawyers are then ranked by Chambers on the basis of “legal knowledge and experience, ability, effectiveness, and client-service” in addition to the departments’ “strength and depth”.

Each lawyer included in the guide is allocated a rank between one and six, in addition to the “elder statesman” and “star” ranks.

Photo by Darren Kirby

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